Many people suggest President Obama has checked out. He treats the ever-growing threat of ISIS as an abstraction. Sources from within the administration are now more openly admitting that, for almost a year, intelligence and Pentagon officials have advised the president of the threat. He has chosen to do very little. Last Wednesday, he said we would "shrink" ISIS and make it "a manageable problem" as opposed to eliminate it.
A few weeks ago, I had dinner with a sitting governor and a dear friend of mine. The friend leaned over to the governor and me and said Barack Obama is to America as Clarence the Angel was to George Bailey in "It's a Wonderful Life." Barack Obama is showing the world what it would look like had America never been born. As this friend later wrote, "Unsurprisingly, Bedford Falls is now Pottersville, and it's a terrible place. Unfortunately, we do not get to revert to the tolerable if modest status quo at the end of the lesson: George Bailey will eventually have to shell the town and retake it street by street from Old Man Potter's Spetsnaz."
Consider how far the world has collapsed in the past year. Again, my friend noted, since Labor Day weekend last year the Chinese expanded their air defense identification zone to incorporate the territory of other nations; the Russians annexed Crimea; ISIS rose; the Russians invaded Ukraine; Mosul fell; the Hungarian liberal democracy collapsed into Russian-aligned authoritarianism; a Central American refugee crisis spawned a border and humanitarian crisis in the United States; the Egyptians and Emiratis attacked Libya without telling the United States; Iraqi Christians and the Yazidi are suffering genocide at the hands of ISIS; NATO is scrambling to shore up its eastern-frontier defenses; mainstream anti-Semitism is re-emerging; the Americans are on the verge of yet another war in Iraq; middle America is seeing race riots, etc., etc.
Seventy-five years ago this past Monday, German tanks rolled across the Polish border setting off World War II. Sixty-nine years ago this past Tuesday, World War II ended as the Japanese formally surrendered. In the nearly seven decades since, the West has established a world-wide peace. Though not flawless, we have lived a relatively stable and secure existence. In just the past year, Barack Obama has largely undone seven decades of gains toward peace.